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8 Drawbacks to Free Web Hosting
2008-03-13 by 

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Being that I own a web hosting company, I frequently surf through online forums replying to people’s hosting questions. Of all the questions I answer, I see one that appears over and over again, what are the drawbacks of free web hosting?

So, for those of you who are interested, here they are . . .

  1. Free hosting accounts typically are packed onto 1 server with lots of other free hosting accounts. This clog of websites severely slows down the server with each one fighting for CPU time. Results: your site may work slow and go offline from time to time.
  2. Low bandwidth and limited disk space. You usually get 1-3GB of bandwidth with free hosting accounts. This translates to a site designed for very little traffic coming to it. If there is a lot of traffic coming to it (or another on your sever) your site may go down. Also, disk space is usually measured in megabytes (50-100mb). That’s basically enough space for a few pics and some text.
  3. Free hosting accounts are limited with the tools you are provided with and can use. Many don’t even allow FTP capabilities (which I could not live without). You usually won’t have the ability to run PHP scripts or have a database which translates to no blog, no forum, no “contact me” form, etc. on your site.
  4. Ads. You usually have to display banner ads on your site. Nothing is better than creating a nice website for yourself and flashing annoying banner ads to your visitors!
  5. You usually have to wait extended periods of time for any customer service help. Paid customers get first help.
  6. Usually you are not able to obtain your own domain name (e.g. no www.my-site.com). You are forced to use either a subdomain of your host or a directory (e.g. www.geocities.com/my-site).
  7. You may have a hard time getting search engines to index your site well.
  8. Many don’t give you an email account. So no “john_doe@my-site.com”

Do you know other drawbacks to free web hosting? Share them with us.

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